Staff Directory

Bruce Ough

Resident Bishop of Dakotas-Minnesota Episcopal Area
(612) 230-3334
Spiritual and administrative leadership to laity and clergy; residential and presidential oversight for The United Methodist Church; clergy appointments; presiding officer of annual conference; member, Council of Bishops and the North Central Jurisdiction of the College of Bishops; president, United Methodist Connectional Table

Janet Beard

Conference Secretary and Registrar

Responsible for the ‘Journal’, minutes and assistance during Annual Conference Session, and updates to the Policy and Procedure Manual. Registrar assistance to Board of Ordained Ministry and administrative support to Director of Ministries

Michelle Behsman

Administrative Assistant
(507) 387-3767
Monthly district newsletter, church conference forms, appointments and events for superintendent and cabinet, general assistance to churches and pastors

Linda Bowers

Front Desk Administrator/Camping Assistant

Receptionist, phones, mail, and reservation of meeting rooms for the Minnesota Conference, and administrative support to DK-MN Area Camp and Retreats

Barb Brower

Director of Finance and Administration, Treasurer
Oversight of conference finance and administrative ministries including budget, audit, accounting, apportionments, statistics, clergy benefit plans, personnel management, investments, legal, property, and insurance

Jean Edin

Benefits Officer
MAC health plan administration, pension plan administration, medical care reimbursement administration, local church benefits consultation, clergy and retiree benefits resource

Stacey Edwards

DK-MN Area Camp and Retreat Coordinator
(612) 230-6131
Dakotas-Minnesota Area Camp and Retreat Ministries coordinator

Phyllis Freier

North Star District Assistant
(320) 763-6795
Monthly district newsletter, church conference forms, appointments and events for superintendent and cabinet, general assistance to churches and pastors

Isaiah Friesen

Environmental Justice Organizer
Works with the Minnesota Annual Conference, New City Church, and Earthkeepers to promote environmental justice. 

Cindy Gregorson

Director of Connectional Ministries
Programmatic ministry oversight, local church organization leadership training, clergy consultation

Karla Hovde

Communications Specialist
Designs materials, updates website, prepares the weekly MN Bulletin Board e-newsletter, disseminates information via social media channels, responds to general communications inquiries

Laurie Huston

Administrative Assistant
(612) 230-6153
Monthly district newsletter, church conference forms, appointments and events for superintendent and cabinet, general assistance to churches and pastors

Ben Ingebretson

DK-MN Area Director of New Church Development
(616) 481-7566
Strategically identifies areas and audiences ripe for new churches, including multi-site ministries and cultivating partner/parent churches that can reach into those areas; provides direction, resources, training, and appropriate intervention for effective stewardship of people and resources

Dan Johnson

Twin Cities District Superintendent
(612) 230-6145
Superintending the work of the Twin Cities District

Gail Johnson

Congregational Development and Events Administrator
(612) 230-6125
Coordinates events for the conference, promotes healthy churches and church plants

Kathy Johnson

(612) 230-6149
Minnesota United Methodist history; research on churches, clergy, and events; records retention consultation; liasion with Commission on Archives and History and the United Methodist Historical Society of Minnesota

Aaron Jones

Administrative Assistant
(612) 230-3337
Administrative support for the Minnesota United Methodist Foundation

Kathleen Keller

(612) 230-6127
Conference financial statements; new general ledger accounts, reports, funds, etc.; stock transfers; bank relations; wire transfers; conference property, casualty, umbrella, and worker's compensation insurance; Foundation accounts payable, payroll, and financial statements; charitable remainder trusts issues; annual audit issues; conference tax filings

Sheilah Kyburz

Episcopal Administrative Assistant
(612) 230-3334
Administrative support, travel details, calendar coordination and hospitality arrangements on behalf of the Minnesota Area resident bishop and cabinet

Catie Levenick

Youth Ministry Team Co-chair
Youth ministries co-chair along with Sami Tierney.

Christa Meland

Director of Communications
(612) 230-6132
Oversees conference communications and communication strategies; disseminates information and feature stories; provides consultation and resources to clergy and lay leaders; edits the weekly MN Connect e-newsletter; serves as media spokesperson

Laura Miles

Office and Technology Coordinator
(612) 230-6123
Organizes office functions; reception; responds to general inquiries; technology

Linda Miller

Benefits Assistant
Assists the benefits officer, Jean Edin

Mark Miller

North Star District Superintendent
Superintending the work in the North Star District

Susan M Richey Nienaber

Big Waters District Superintendent
(612) 230-6153
Superintending the work in the Big Waters District

BJ Olsen

Conference Statistician
(612) 230-6138
Offerings, apportionments; Tables I, II, and III; group workers' compensation

Diane Owen

DK-MN Area Lilly Grant Program Director
(612) 230-6129
Leads the implementation of programming related to a $1 million Lilly grant used for financial literacy and debt-reduction for pastors

Vickie Riley

Administrative Assistant
(612) 230-6146
Church conference forms, appointments and events for superintendent and cabinet, general assistance to churches and pastors

Kim Schmidt

Senior Accountant
Accounts payable, benefits, and bookkeeper

Susan Shellberg

DK-MN Area Camp and Retreat Accountant
Accounts payable for conference, accounting for Dakotas-Minnesota Area Camp and Retreat Ministries

Keith Shew

DK-MN Area Director of Camp & Retreat Ministries

Oversight of conference camp, retreat, and off-site ministries, including financial, fund development, site operations, programs, camp council development, camping ministry personnel, and capital improvements for the Dakotas and Minnesota Conferences

Jody Thone

Director of Leadership Development
Creates and delivers a comprehensive system of leadership development from recruitment to deployment

Sami Tierney

Youth Ministry Team Co-chair
Youth ministries co-chair along with Catie Levenick.

Fred Vanderwerf

Southern Prairie District Superintendent
Superintending the work in the Southern Prairie District

Val Walker

Foundation Executive Director
Minnesota United Methodist Foundation Executive Director

Cynthia Williams

River Valley District Superintendent
Superintending the work in the River Valley District

Jill Williamson

Accounting and Database Assistant
Finance assistant

Lyndy Zabel

Director of Community Engagement

Oversees outreach ministries of compassion and justice and partnerships for the conference

Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church

122 West Franklin Avenue, Suite 400 Minneapolis, MN 55404

(612) 870-0058